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Sounding Thunder, the Song of Francis Pegahmagabow


Date: Saturday, June 8, 2024  |  Time: 7:30 pm

Post-Concert Q&A: with artists and host Andrea Ratuski

Location: Jubilee Place Concert Hall
181 Riverton Ave., Winnipeg

Sounding Thunder, the song of Francis Pegahmagabow is a musical journey into the life of the renowned Ojibwe WWI sniper, decorated officer of the Canadian military and Indigenous political activist, Francis Pegahmagabow. The 65-minute performance is divided into three acts, exploring Pegahmagabow’s early years immersed in the world of the Anishinaabe spirits, his extraordinary accomplishments in the trenches of WWI, and finally his political life as Chief of the Wausauksing Ojibwe and founder of the early Indigenous political moment in Canada.

Sounding Thunder was co-created by multi-award-winning Ojibwe author Armand Garnet Ruffo and JUNO-nominated composer Timothy Corlis, with consultation from Brian McInnes, great grandson of Francis Pegahmagabow, with additional musical material from Anishinaabe singer Jodi Contin Baker. The production draws on the memoirs of Pegahmagabow himself, family memories, and historical sources to introduce audiences to a little-known side of Canadian history while offering a fascinating story and dynamic musical experience. The production has a track record of strong reviews, often naming its main strength in the respectful way First Nations and Settler communities collaborated to share the story of Francis. After its initial performance in Wausauksing First Nation, Murray Sinclair wrote: “I am overwhelmed by this amazing performance and the story that it tells.”

Concert Artists

Sounding Thunder – Ontario Artists

Jodi Baker Contin, Wasauksing singer

Keenan Keeshig, Anishinaabe actor

Brian McInnes, narrator

Larry Beckwith, conductor

Karl Stobbe, violin

Joel Quarrington, contrabass

James Campbell, clarinet

Christian Sharpe, bassoon

Guy Few, trumpet

Ken MacDonald, horn

Rachel Thomas, trombone

Beverley Johnston, percussion

Tim Corlis, composer

Armand Garnet-Ruffo, librettist


Sounding Thunder – Manitoba Artists

Chris Anstey, violin

Susan McCallum, violin

Elation Pauls, violin

Elise Lavallée, viola

Sam Nadurak, cello

Meredith Johnson, contrabass

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts and The Winnipeg Foundation for this performance.


Special thank you to additional presenting partner's for Sounding Thunder

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